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Dancing Israelis

Part of a series on September 11th, 2001 Attacks. [View Related Entries]

Updated Mar 25, 2020 at 09:22AM EDT by andcallmeshirley.

Added Nov 04, 2019 at 01:33PM EST by Adam.

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Dancing Israelis refers to five Israeli men, Sivan Kurzberg, Paul Kurzberg, Oded Ellner, Yaron Shimuel and Omar Marmari, who were arrested on September 11th, 2001 after they were reported to be acting in a celebratory manner as the attacks took place in New York City. An FBI investigation of the five men found that two were connected to Mossad, but they were ultimately released without charge. Suspicion continued to trail the five men, and photos released by the FBI under the Freedom of Information Act several years after the attacked further fueled suspicions the men were connected to the attacks.


During the 9/11 attacks in New York City, five men were reported the police by a New York woman identified as "Maria" for appearing to be reacting the planes hitting the Twin Towers in a celebratory manner, "jumping" and "high-fiving."[1] The men were linked to a company called "Urban Moving Systems" and were seen near a white van. The five men were detained later that day and police found "maps of the city with certain places highlighted, box cutters, $4,700 cash stuffed in a sock, and foreign passports." Bomb sniffing dogs were brought to the van and reacted as if they had smelled explosives.[2] The FBI discovered that two of the men, Sivan Kurzberg and Paul Kurzberg, were Mossad agents. The five men were ultimately released without charge, and argued their behavior was simply immature behavior.


While they were released, the case lived on as people still suspected the five of being connected to the attacks. Part of this was due to an interview on Israeli TV after their release in which they stated, "The fact of the matter is we are coming from a country that experiences terror daily. Our purpose was to document the event,"[3] which some interpreted to mean the reason they were in America at all was to document the 9/11 attacks.

2019 Updates

In 2019, the story regained some traction online as the FBI released several photos seized from the five Israelis on 9/11 as part of a Freedom of Information Act request.[4] The photos indeed appear to show the men celebrating during the 9/11 attacks. These images led to updates in The Mint Press[5] which added more fuel to the conspiracy (examples shown below).

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Charlie Kirk Trolling

During a speaking tour, Turning Point USA founder Charlie Kirk was trolled by a question asker in a Make America Great Again hat who asked him about the site's philo-Semitic stance by referencing the Dancing Israelis.

"OK, I got a quick and fun, lighthearted question for you, Charlie. So I know you gave a speech in Jerusalem earlier this year. Were there any awesome, fun dance parties that you had afterwards, because I heard that Israelis are some of the best dancers in the world. I mean, if you guys don’t believe me, just Google ‘dancing Israelis.’ It’s insane how good their dance moves are. Would you agree or disagree with that?"

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